China Flies Fighter Jets 30-35 Kms From Eastern Ladakh: Report

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Srinagar: Amid rising tension and buildup by the two nuclear countries along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in Eastern Ladakh, the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) on Monday flew fighter jets around 30-35 kms near the contested area fueling fears of border escalation.

According to Asian News International (ANI), the Chinese army have kept a fleet of around 10-12 fighter aircraft at Hotan and Gargunsa at the moment and they are also carrying out flying activity close to the Indian Territory. The two airbases of Hotan and Gargunsa are around 100-150 kms from the LAC.

“We are keeping a close eye on the movement of these J-11 and J-7 fighter aircraft,” ANI quoted sources as saying.

“Their fighter aircraft have been carrying out sorties from air bases in Hotan and Gargunsa and fly 30-35 kms from our territory in Ladakh region, sources told the wire agency.

The tension along the LAC has heightened after the armies of the two countries moved in heavy equipment and weaponry, including artillery and combat vehicles to their rear bases close to the disputed areas in eastern Ladakh. The Chinese troops have also deployed J-7 and J-11 fighter aircraft at their airbases hinting at a long haul.

Meanwhile, Network 18 reported that army is rushing additional reinforcements to Galwan Valley to meet any security challenge. The report quotes sources as saying that the reinforcements being sent to Ladakh are from Kashmir.

“The shifting of troops from LoC to LAC happens under dire circumstances, and these are dire circumstance,” a senior officer told Network 18. He added that at the Command and Corps level, there are ‘uncommitted reserves’ that can be moved without impacting operations on the ground. In Kashmir’s case, it would be counter-terrorism operations.

The report also quoted Durbuk villagers as saying that a convoy of 80 to 90 trucks, including civil vehicles carrying troops, ammunition and supplies pass through their area every night.

An article in Global Times, the official mouthpiece of the Chinese Communist party, lists Type 15 tanks, Z-20 helicopters and GJ-2 drones that have been added to Chinese arsenal for high-altitude conflicts against India, the report said.

Meanwhile, India and China both claim that ‘military and diplomatic’ level talks are on to resolve the issue amicably.

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